When we were kids there were fireflies galore in the summer; we used to watch their graceful, blinking arc after darkness fell on our back yard. I haven’t seen fireflies in years, on either coast. Supposedly they’ve been killed off by insecticide and other environmental stresses.
But in Ocean Grove, awaiting the concert at the great hall, I saw a firefly — not an army of them, a single one. I was just as fascinated as I had been all those decades ago. My eyes tracked the same graceful, blinking arc I remembered from before. I felt a wave of nostalgia for an era when there were armies of them, blinking in the night.